FC Barcelona were keen on buying Paul Pogba from Juventus, but they simply could not compete economically with Manchester United, according to club president Josep Maria Bartomeu, speaking to ESPN FC.
“In the summer of 2015, Paul Pogba was playing in Turin and we simply told Juve that, if one day they decide to sell the player, we would be interested,” Bartomeu said.
”When they sold the player, they told us what the offer would have to be, and we couldn’t afford that amount of money at the time.”
Manchester United bought Pogba for 105 million, which was then a world record.hich was then a world rec
”So he went to United, and he’s making them better as a team because he’s one of the stars of the world of football right now.”
Bartomeu, who first ascended to power from the role of vice-president after Sandro Rosell resigned, won the right to serve a full term as president in a 2015 election, about a month before Pogba’s move to United.
Former president Joan Laporta was second in the running to win the presidency that year. Laporta had promised he would bring Pogba to Barça if elected. Interestingly, Laporta had promised to appoint Éric Abidal as sporting director if he won the election. Abidal works under Bartomeu in a similar role these days. Abidal was seen as a key to bringing Pogba to Barcelona, as he has a personal relationship with his fellow Frenchman.
Rumors that Pogba would join Barcelona remerged last summer as the player struggled to get along with his coach, José Mourinho. In the end, nothing came of it. Now, with Mourinho out, whether Pogba will leave United is up in the air. Real Madrid have been linked as potential suitors.
Pogba and company are set to play Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals this week.